For the week, Nashville, Biloxi and Wisconsin each tied their home series 3-3, while Carolina lost its home series 4-1.
- OF Lamar Sparks activated from AA Biloxi’s 7-day injured list
- RHP Jason Alexander’s rehab shifted to AAA Nashville from AA Biloxi
Nashville Pre-Game Media Notes
Final: Nashville 3, Norfolk 2
Box Score / Game Log
Via the Sounds’ website, game details, and we encourage readers to review the affiliate write-up as part of their Link Report routine: Sounds Cap First Half With Win Over Tides
Rehabbing RHP Jason Alexander (4 2/3 IP, 1 R (0 ER), 4 H, 0 BB, 3 Ks) re-discovered his early 2022 form and 2B Josh VanMeter (1-for-1, HR, 2 walks, HBP, RBI) homered while reaching base four times, leading Nashville to a chippy win over Norfolk in a game which saw three ejections.
You’ll find more video highlights at the Nashville Sounds Twitter feed.
- After Alexander conceded 7 runs and 14 hits over 7 2/3 IP in his three preceding rehab starts for ACL Brewers and AA Biloxi, I certainly did not expect him to dominate league-leading Norfolk, but he did just that, walking none and limiting hard contact (four singles, lots of ground balls).
- Though our eyes have been fixated on center fielder Sal Frelick (0-for-4, no Ks in his first game back since a scary foul ball injury on Thursday), 1B Keston Hiura (1-for-3, HBP, 2 Ks) and SS Brice Turang (1-for-3, double, walk, RBI; hitting streak up to 12 games), we need to take note of VanMeter. The 28-year old left-handed hitter only played three games in April, then rehabbed for five games in ACL ball in mid-June and has quickly found his footing in four post-rehab games with Nashville: 3-for-8, 3 homers, 6 walks, 1 HBP, just 2 Ks. He’s played in the majors each of the past four seasons and clearly has his sights set for a return.
- The game went sideways in the bottom of the 6th inning, as Tides’ fireballer Darwinzon Hernandez hit VanMeter and 3B Patrick Dorrian with pitches that were nowhere near the plate. Each of C Payton Henry (who was on base), Dorrian and Hernandez were sent home early in the ensuing scuffle.
- LHP Darrell Thompson (1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 BB, 1 K) and RHP Abner Uribe (1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 Ks) were solid in middle inning relief work, with Uribe entering just after the mini-brawl and throwing several 100mph pitches at and above the eyebrows, though thankfully they were over the plate.
Next week’s outlook: Nashville (39-36) travels to face Cardinals’ affiliate Memphis (40-34), with all full season affiliate series running from Wednesday-Monday this time around.
Biloxi Pre-Game Media Notes
Final: Chattanooga 10, Biloxi 6
Box Score / Game Log
Via the Shuckers’ website, game details: Tyler Black Reaches 40 Stolen Bases in Shuckers Loss to Lookouts
The Lookouts jumped on starting RHP Christian Mejias (2 IP, 5 R, 3 H, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 1 K) with four runs in the 1st inning and remained relentless thereafter, scoring five more runs off of RHP TJ Shook (4 IP, 3 R, 4 H, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 4 Ks) and LHP Nick Bennett (1 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 0 BB, 2 Ks).
Biloxi didn’t wilt, however, scoring in each of the first three innings and narrowing the game to 7-6 with a C Jeferson Quero (1-for-3, HR, walk, RBI) moonshot over the lights in the bottom of the 5th inning, his 10th of the year.
Again, you’ll see a lot more video highlights at Biloxi’s Twitter feed.
- 1B/C Wes Clarke (1-for-3, HR, walk, 2 RBIs) continues to show some potency, notching his 8th homer of 2023 with a solo shot in the 3rd inning. 2B Freddy Zamora (2-for-3, double, walk) and left fielder Tristen Lutz (2-for-4, RBI) also contributed four of the team’s seven hits.
- DH/3B Tyler Black didn’t reach base via hit or walk, but did manage to steal his 40th base of the season after reaching on an error in the 1st inning. Unfortunately, he was caught stealing in the next frame for the fifth time.
- The team is clearly committed to giving Zamora more time at second base, where he’s started five of the past nine games, even forcing Felix Valerio over to third base in this contest for the first time this season.
- Trailing 10-6 in the bottom of the 8th inning, the Shuckers got one final chance to turn the tide, but unfortunately Lutz grounded into a double play to end a two-on, one-out threat.
Next week’s outlook: After an extra day off on Tuesday, Biloxi (34-35) hosts Braves’ affiliate Mississippi (33-35).
Wisconsin Pre-Game Media Notes
Final: Wisconsin 12, Lansing 4
Box Score / Game Log
Via the Rattlers’ website, game details: Offense Pounds Sixteen Hits to Beat Lugnuts 12-4
As always with Timber Rattler home games, take some time to enjoy detailed video highlights and the post-game podcast.
Starting his second game of the week, RHP Jacob Misiorowski (2 2/3 IP, 2 R, 4 H, 4 BB, 5 Ks) uncharacteristically struggled, conceding two doubles, two singles and four walks (including the final three batters, each after running counts full), but that strikeout capability to escape threats is something special.
Thankfully, the Wisconsin offense picked him up with four runs in each of the 2nd and 3rd innings as the team built an 8-2 lead and never looked back.
Timber Rattlers’ Extras:
- Every spot in the lineup collected at least one hit, with center fielder Joe Gray Jr. (3-for-4, triple, double, SF, 2 RBIs) leading the way with a 2nd inning triple, 3rd inning double, 4th inning single and 6th inning sacrifice fly, following up Saturday’s 2-homer, 6 RBI effort with aplomb.
- Each of RHPs Brannon Jordan (2 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 4 Ks) and Tanner Shears (1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 0 BB, 1 HBP, 2 Ks) and LHP Luis Amaya (1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 BB, 0 Ks) were solid in relief, with Jordan stranding three Misiorowski baserunners in a tense top of the 3rd inning.
- Two-hit games abounded in a fun series finale for 4,606 home fans: 2B Robert Moore, C Matt Wood, 3B Ben Metzinger, right fielder Eduarqui Fernandez, left fielder Terence Doston. 1B Ernesto Martinez also reached base three times (double, walk, HBP).
Next week’s outlook: Wisconsin (28-39) hits the road to take on Royals’ affiliate Quad Cities (32-37), with the series commencing on Wednesday.
Carolina Pre-Game Media Notes
Final: Lynchburg 3, Carolina 1
Box Score / Game Log
Via the Mudcats’ website, game details: Lara Homers in 3-1 Series Finale Loss to Lynchburg
The final score was close, but the Hillcats really dominated in terms of opportunities, going 2-for-18 with runners in scoring position versus just 0-for-3 for Carolina, who appear to need an offensive infusion.
Lynchburg led 3-0 after three innings.
18-year old center fielder Luis Lara (2-for-4, HR, RBI) appeared to be the team’s best hope for clawing back into the game thereafter, striking out on a pitch timer violation with a runner aboard in the 3rd inning, homering to lead off the 6th inning and singling to bring the potential game-tying run to the plate in the bottom of the 8th inning.
- RHP Logan Henderson (1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 BB, 1 K) got the start, though was limited to one inning and 16 pitches after starting a game just five days earlier. I’ll put the concern-o-meter (regarding potential injury) at a 3 out of 10 for Mr. Henderson, while waiting to see if he makes a start in Carolina's upcoming series.
- That said, if Henderson’s start was abruptly cut short for whatever reason, it might explain why RHP Quinton Low (1 1/3 IP, 3 R, 1 H, 4 BB, 1 WP, 2 Ks) struggled so much in the 2nd inning, commencing with eight consecutive balls.
- Four tips of the cap to the four relievers who kept Lynchburg off the board over nearly seven innings to give the Mudcats a chance: RHPs Jeferson Figueroa, Will Childers, Jeison Pena and Shane Smith (combined 6 2/3 IP, 0 R, 6 H, 4 BB, 1 HBP, 2 WP, 7 Ks). Childers threw 76 pitches over his three innings of work.
- 3B Jheremy Vargas followed up Lara’s 8th inning single with a double to put the pressure on the Hillcats, but SS Jadher Areinamo flied out end that threat. C Jose Sibrian went 2-for-3, while right fielder Kay-Lan Nicasia took an early shower, having been ejected after a 4th inning ground out.
Next week’s outlook: Carolina (34-32) stays in North Carolina, heading to Kinston to take on Wednesday to take on Rangers’ affiliate Down East (39-25).
We hope that you enjoy the Minor League Link Report. Good luck in the three Rookie level games on each of Monday and Tuesday, with full season affiliates resuming action on Wednesday, June 28.
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